Interview with... Mike, Managing Director of Premier Teachers and former supply teacher

Interview with the managing director of a supply teacher recruitment agenciyFormer supply teacher Mike Donnelly, now Managing Director of Premier Teachers Ltd, talks to us about how he helps to improve the working lives of his supply teachers.
Have you ever worked as a supply teacher?

Yes, when I relocated to the North East I worked on supply before setting up my agency.

What service do you provide to supply teachers?

We provide career advice, mock interviews, CV advice and of course job placements.

Can you tell me a little about the recruitment process for potential supply teachers?

Firstly we ask for full CVs and this is followed up with a telephone conversation by one of our Consultants before interview to check there is something we can offer the teacher. Teachers are then given a full interview to check; ID, qualifications, proofs of address, DBS/CRBs and teachers also complete a registration form a work history form. Following that we give teachers a thorough interview to find out about their understanding of safe guarding, what makes a good lesson, differentiation and AFL.

How do you welcome a new supply teacher into your organisation?

We make sure they meet all of the team and not just the Consultant interviewing them. We also try to get them a placement quickly and we always ring at the end of the first day and first week to ask how things have went for our teachers.

What are your expectations of a supply teacher in terms of providing work, marking work, playground duties etc.?

It depends whether the teacher is Primary trained or Secondary. Our Primary teachers are expected to mark all of the books before they leave, this is really important. Secondary teachers would not be expected to mark books for short term supply but this would begin after the first week. Setting of work normally starts after the first two weeks but this depends on the schools' expectations. All of our supply staff are expected to carry out a duty if asked by the school.

What personal qualities does your agency look for in a supply teacher?

Willingness to learn, enthusiasm, good time keeping, ability to plan and teach effective lessons and certainly a sense of humour.

How do you support supply teachers throughout their time with your agency?

We check up on how they are progressing regularly with both the teacher and the school. If it is a subject we can help with we may even help with resources as we are all teachers ourselves. We observe lessons when we can as this is a great way to support our teachers. We have been know to pay for a taxi if their car is off the road and the school is not too far!

We had one teacher who who got stuck in a tunnel on the way to an interview which meant neither the school nor our agency could get in touch with them.
And finally! Who would be the ultimate supply teacher?

Nelson Mandela

Interview with... Rachel, Senior Education Recruitment Consultant at EYPS Teaching Supply

Rachel at EYPSThe lovely Rachel Aird, Senior Education Recruitment Consultant at EYPS Teaching Supply spoke to us about finding the perfect job for supply teachers!

Have you ever worked as a supply teacher?

Yes, I've worked as a supply teacher and a nursery nurse too! Whilst I was doing my Primary Education degree I worked for EYPS on supply in a variety of nurseries during university holidays. Once I qualified as a teacher I worked on supply until I started as a recruitment consultant for EYPS. A lot of Team EYPS have an education background. Kirsty, one of our directors, is a qualified teacher and was a senior early years consultant for both Newcastle and North Tyneside Authorities for many years. In total we have four qualified teachers and one qualified nursery nurse within our office team who have all experienced the highs and lows of supply work. It means we have a unique grasp of the best way to support our supply teachers and practitioners.

What service do you provide to supply teachers?

We provide a full recruitment service to teachers offering them day to day, short and long term positions within the many schools we have long-lasting relationships with. Supply teachers love our professional and efficient but down to earth approach. Whilst working on supply we don’t want teachers to miss out on training and professional development opportunities. This is why we provide free and discounted places on training events and workshops with education consultants, head teachers and Ofsted Inspectors. The sessions are well attended and always receive positive feedback.

EYPS seems to be quite a forward-thinking agency. Could you explain a little of the other services you provide?

As a supply agency finding work for teachers is our main priority but we like to offer more and go the extra mile. Some of the additional things we provide for our teachers include:

Support and Advice: We want teachers to feel confident and prepared. Whether its applications or interviews, our consultants are here to help. 
Creative Learning Days: We offer inspirational educational workshops for children as an alternative to one-off teacher supply days. We provide teachers with training on these days which are popular within schools. They can help to open up future job opportunities. 
Always There: Our friendly team are on hand to answer calls and emails 24/7. 
Rewards & Incentives: Teachers enjoy special raffles and regular prize draws. We like to make them feel appreciated. 
Training: We provide free workshops on a regular basis so our teachers can stand out in schools.

Can you tell me a little about the recruitment process for potential supply teachers?

Our team make finding a job a hassle-free process and will support supply teachers through everything. All teachers have a face to face registration interview with a member of our experienced recruitment team. The interview is an opportunity for us to really get to know the teacher, what experience they’ve had, what training they’ve attended and understand exactly the type of role they’re looking for. Likewise it’s a chance for the teacher to find out about EYPS and what we can offer them. We also carry out the necessary vetting checks to ensure that candidates are fully compliant to work.

How do you welcome a new supply teacher into your organisation?

We welcome them by finding them their ideal job! We truly care about our supply teachers and make it our mission to find them their perfect role. The regular training workshops and social events we hold for teachers also enable us to fully welcome them to the EYPS family with a cuppa and slice of cake! They also seem to appreciate our daily contact through telephone calls and emails. One of our new supply teachers recently commented “Thank you for all of the opportunities…I love how in touch you have been even just in the last week. The daily contact has helped with my confidence. You've given me a lot of assurance for the future! Genuinely, thank you.”

What are your expectations of a supply teacher in terms of providing work, marking work, playground duties etc.?

Every teacher who registers with EYPS is given a ‘Welcome to EYPS’ information pack to take away. It includes details about what is expected of them as an EYPS representative as well as useful tips and advice on how to excel and enjoy supply work. Things like taking prepared work, marking books, leaving handover notes are all within the handy ‘Welcome to EYPS’ booklet.

What personal qualities does your agency look for in a supply teacher?

Hardworking, enthusiastic, committed, passionate, flexible and reliable are just a few of the personal qualities we look for. We understand that every teacher is different though and every school supply need is different too, so we make sure a teacher’s skills and qualities are well suited to the school we are sending them to.

How do you support supply teachers throughout their time with your agency?

Supply teachers are completely supported whilst working with EYPS. They receive great rates of pay, advice from experienced education consultants and they can attend our training and CPD courses. Our teachers also know that if they have any queries or concerns they can contact us at any time of the day and we will readily help them in any way we can. We know it can sometimes be daunting starting a new role so once we have placed a teacher into a job we’ll stay in regular contact, making sure they are always happy and content.

And finally! Who would be the ultimate supply teacher?

Jack Black in School of Rock is amazing!


EYPS Teaching Supply Agency

Interview with... Rosie, Secondary Education Consultant at Academics

Interview with... RosieAcademics' Rosie Cullen,  Secondary Education Consultant in the Warrington branch, spoke to us about safeguarding, commitment, and Dolph! 

What service do you provide to supply teachers?

At Academics we provide a very personal service by interviewing all teachers ourselves in order to understand the type of school and work they are looking for. We really get to know our teachers so that we can find the right work for them. We offer long term, short term and permanent positions depending on the requests from our teachers. We are an honest and upfront company who work very hard for our teachers and expect the same in return. We build our business by building an impeccable reputation and relationship with our schools and teachers which sets us aside from the rest.

Can you tell me a little about the recruitment process for potential supply teachers?

The recruitment process starts with a phone interview so that we can get to know our teachers, run through their CV and determine whether they are right for positions in which we are recruiting for. Once the relationship is established over the phone and both the consultant and teacher are happy with each other, we invite you in for a face to face interview. At this stage we complete all safeguarding checks. We have been awarded the APSCO Compliance plus and REC accreditation for our safeguarding and compliance procedures (we are 1 of only a handful of agencies to have been awarded both). We conduct an interview to discuss the type of school that you are looking to work with and the type of work, whether it will be long term or short term positions which suit you personally. We will run through everything that you need to know and expect from working with Academics. Then once you are fully through our safeguarding procedure and acceptable references have been received, you will be cleared to work. We will keep our teachers up to date with all movements on their file and at what stage they are up to. We have a 5 day turnaround on clearing our teachers for work which we stick to unless any specific reasons stop us.

How do you welcome a new supply teacher into your organisation?

When you come into register with Academics, we aim to make you feel as comfortable as having a chat with a friend. You will be offered a warm welcome on arrival. You will receive a welcome pack from us that includes anything that you need to know about working with us. We work as a team with our teachers and make sure that they know that they can call us at any time if they have any questions at all. We are a very approachable agency who really do put our teachers first and pride ourselves on this.

What are your expectations of a supply teacher in terms of providing work, marking work, playground duties etc.?

Our expectations of our teachers in terms of providing work and marking work really depends on the situation and placement that they are in. If you are in a long term position then you will be expected to plan, prepare and mark work as you are completely taking over the teachers responsibilities. If you are working in a short term position such as a daily booking, unless stated otherwise, you will not be expected to provide work. We do believe that our teachers should treat every day of supply as an interview, so we expect you to give 100% towards the role. We will always say to our teachers to do whatever they feel comfortable doing. Every school will have different expectations of our supply teachers so we ask that at each school you assess the situation regarding playground duties and marking work and make your own informed decision.

What personal qualities does your agency look for in a supply teacher?

Academics look for teachers who are honest, hardworking and loyal. We work very hard to make you feel comfortable and for you to trust us, so we expect the same level of commitment from our teachers. We know that every teacher will suit different types of schools so we do not have specific personal qualities that we will look for, we only ask that our teachers are trustworthy and committed to teaching in order to keep our reputation high within the area.

How do you support supply teachers throughout their time with your agency?

We are a very supportive agency and support our teachers 100%. We offer tailored advice to our teachers whether you are an NQT or a fully qualified teacher who is new to the world of supply teaching. As previously mentioned, we really get to know our teachers which helps us to advise for different situations which may be personal to them. After every teachers first day of supply in a new school we call them and ask for their feedback whether it be good or bad. It is just as important for us to receive honest feedback from our teachers as it is to gain feedback about our teachers from our schools. We always ask that if our teachers have any issues or problems that they come to us immediately in order for us to help and advise.

Academics chose to support National Supply Teacher Week this year.  Could you tell us a little about why and how?

We strongly believe that our teachers represent who we are as a business. It gave us a real opportunity to show our teachers the appreciation that we have for them all year round. The week also enabled us to let our teachers know that they are not alone and that they are a part of the bigger picture. We could not do what we do well without them.

And finally! Who would be the ultimate supply teacher?

Dolph Lungren because: He's a genius (he has degrees in chemistry and chemical engineering and he speaks 7 languages) He was an international karate champion (Always thinking about the extra curricular activities) He's an accomplished drummer and musician And lets face it, the students are not going to test his patience!

Get in touch with Academics!

Interview with... Rosie Academics
North West Office
3rd Floor, Bank Quay House
Sankey Street

T: 01925 231375
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Interview with... Emily, Director of Supply Teaching Solutions

Emily Dornan - Supply Teaching Solutions

We really enjoyed our chat with Emily Dornan, she is obviously passionate about her work.  Emily is Director of Supply Teaching Solutions, a new teaching agency based in Brighton.  
Have you ever worked as a supply teacher?

Yes, twice. My first ever day as an NQT was in a SEN school for children with BESD. I was so nervous beforehand, I even rang the school to double check they knew I was a NQT ! I loved it and stayed there for three years. The second time was on my return to the UK from teaching in Bangkok. Both times I was doing supply whilst looking for a permanent post. We realise that teachers work on supply for a variety of personal reasons, those who are hoping to secure permanent positions will be pleased to know we don't charge schools introduction fees. We don't feel they are in the best interests of teachers, pupils or schools.

What service do you provide to supply teachers?

We are a teacher and a deputy head who run a local, independent agency and we pride ourselves on offering a personal service. We are available 24/7 to provide support and helpful advice as we have experience of both working on supply and booking supply teachers. We understand that supply teachers are an integral part of the education system and if they are not recognised, supported and rewarded as such the whole system suffers. This drives everything we do. We pay our teachers the highest viable rate and make no payroll charges. We provide relevant and up to date CPD which is tailored to the needs of supply teachers. Furthermore we match teachers carefully to roles and whether it be day to day supply, longer term assignments, PPG, SEN or inclusion support we strive to ensure that teachers add value to their career during their time with Supply Teaching Solutions.  Based in the South East, we cover Brighton and Hove as well as the wider area of East Sussex.

Supply Teaching Solutions is a relatively new agency. What advantages does this bring?

Being a new agency we bring fresh eyes to supply in our area. I believe that we are the only agency locally to have a deputy head as a director which ensures we have a unique understanding of education provision in this area. We are building our team day by day and encourage supply teachers to come and grow with us.

Can you tell me a little about the recruitment process for potential supply teachers?

An initial phone call will determine if, potentially we are the right teacher and agency for each other. After we have received a teachers CV we will meet up to get to know each other better, it's important that we understand exactly the type of work they want. We will discuss the teachers experience and teaching style. Our vetting procedure is thorough as we are, of course, fully committed to safeguarding. The necessary documentation will be evidenced and a series of checks will be carried out after interview.

How do you welcome a new supply teacher into your organisation?

I take every new teacher out for a coffee and a good chat. Working relationships function best when there is a personal connection. Our teachers are part of our team and it's important that they know that we care about them and their career. I would hope all our teachers find me approachable and feel comfortable lifting the phone and discussing anything with me.

What are your expectations of a supply teacher in terms of providing work, marking work, playground duties etc.?

We are building a reputation locally for working with high quality teachers. Our expectations are clearly defined during the registration process through discussion, our code of conduct and handbook. Our teachers have been chosen because they have demonstrated through their previous roles, teaching practices and interview that they are excellent practitioners. We treat them as fellow professionals and trust that whatever the assignment our teachers will fulfil all the duties of the class teacher that are required in the time available.

What personal qualities does your agency look for in a supply teacher?

We look for enthusiastic teachers with great communication skills who can quickly develop relationships with both children and staff. Confidence is key, supply teaching is not an easy job. Teaching lots of different children in a variety of year groups and schools requires someone who is, or can appear to be, calm and in control. We as an agency have a role to play here also in ensuring teachers are comfortable and fully supported in their placements. Reliability is also so important in ensuring the system works smoothly.

How do you support supply teachers throughout their time with your agency?

In any way we can ! Want to chat ? Call us. Want help with your CV or interview technique ? Ask us. Want to observe in key stage or year group you want to feel more confident in ? We can arrange it. We encourage our NQT teachers in particular to talk with us about anything they want to know more about and have recently created a blog on our website dedicated to sharing current knowledge and thinking. Whatever we can do to help we will do it.

And finally! Who would be the ultimate supply teacher?

I think David Walliams would be fantastic. He has that rare quality of really being able to see the world through the eyes of a child, just like Roald Dahl did. The children would love him and he would make lessons so much fun !

 Supply Teaching Solutions

Interview with... Juneid, Education Consultant at ITN Mark Education

Interview with.... ITN Mark Education ConsultantEducation Consultant Juneid Razzak, who works for ITN Mark Education in West London, talks to us about ITN Mark Education's expectations of their supply teachers.

What service do you provide to supply teachers?

We are a human resource provider to the education sector, placing teachers into interim, long term and permanent posts in education establishments

Can you tell me a little about the recruitment process for potential supply teachers?

Teachers should expect to undergo a rigorous registration process, including a number of safeguarding checks. They will need to bring appropriate documentation to support their application. They should then expect to complete an in depth interview with their consultant so that he or she can place the candidate into a school that matches their ethos and approach

What personal qualities does your agency look for in a supply teacher?

We look for inspiring and passionate classroom practitioners who are student focused. Strong communication skills and the ability to make learning interactive and engaging are also prerequisites. Our teaching staff need to be able to build relations with students and deliver lessons that impact all students in the classroom.

How do you welcome a new supply teacher into your organisation?

We spend time getting to know them! Before sending any teacher out to work, we will have collated a wide range of information and evidence about their working history, meaning that we can match effectively to our client schools. We spend time sharing information about ITN Mark Education and our processes. We can also offer support to teachers in the form of external CPD - and coaching for interview success. Our aim is to enable each teacher to achieve their potential in the right post

What are your expectations of a supply teacher in terms of providing work, marking work, playground duties etc.?

As a qualified professional, we would expect (unless clearly agreed beforehand) that a teacher would fulfil all of their professional obligations. This includes planning, marking as well as playground duties. This is particularly relevant when a teacher is placed in a longer term post. It is important to remember that an education establishment expects more than just a presence in the classroom, they expect a professional contribution to the school learning community.

What advice could you give to supply teachers regarding building a strong, positive relationship with their consultant?

The very best way in which to build a relationship with your consultant is to be transparent in terms of what you can do, what you want to do and where you can get to! Always keep in touch and let your consultant know if you are unwell, running late or not available! If you can demonstrate you are reliable and committed your consultant will go do their very best to ensure you are always working.

How does ITN Mark go 'the extra mile' in terms of support for their supply teachers?

ITN Mark Education are committed to the development of their teaching staff. They can offer national and international opportunities to teachers and are not restricted to local areas when looking for employment opportunities on a teacher's behalf. Consultants will go the extra mile for their staff, including running teachers to school if they are stuck and taking lunch to teachers on their first day in a long term booking. ITN Mark support teachers through coaching, providing indepth information on education establishments and external CPD to ensure each teacher to be "the best they can be".

And finally! Who would be the ultimate supply teacher?

Bear Grylls would be the prefect supply teacher and suitable for both Primary and Secondary. He’s bold and enigmatic, he would instantly gain all the children’s attention.

Interview with.... ITN Mark Education Consultant

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